Not Logged In Log In   Sign Up   Points Leaders
Follow Us    3:56 PM

Message Forum - Read Message

Category: Talk back to us! > Topics Add to favorite topics   Post new topicPost New Topic
Author Topic: Gasbuddy Direct? Back to Topics
HeavyDuty_cache

Champion Author
Omaha

Posts:15,444
Points:3,085,930
Joined:Sep 2005
Message Posted: Mar 3, 2013 10:04:58 AM

The Omaha site had some "Gasbuddy Direct" or GBDirect. Their white board said that it was an account used by multiple users.

Only problem is that one of these "multiple users" doesn't know about the pricing scheme used in Nebraska and Western Iowa with Mid-grade (E-10) prices being cheaper than the Regular (E-0) grade.

Is this another way to make the price boards unreliable?
REPLIES (newest first) Post a Reply
Profile Pic
Don
Moderator
Message Posted: Mar 6, 2013 11:42:37 AM

kwzh "[...] just shut off their price feeding and wait for them to ask why."

This does happen from time to time.

As mentioned, a lot of the errors posted through GB_Direct (cash vs credit, prices posted in the wrong entry fields, or plain-as-day fat finger typos) do come from user error.

There's not just one person that provides prices through GB_Direct so, as CK put it "Let's just pretend the GBD is like any other price reporter: if it's wrong, correct it and, if incorrect pricing continues, report it to GB." - absolutely.

We can take those details, and use them to narrow down the source and allocate the right people to contact or correct those sources.

Otherwise, when we get reports through site/app feedback that solely state "GB_Direct has been posting inaccurate prices!" we'll be following up and digging for those details anyway.

-Don


[Edited by: Don at 3/6/2013 11:43:18 AM EST]
Profile Pic
kwzh
Champion Author San Jose

Posts:23,376
Points:4,318,555
Joined:Jul 2001
Message Posted: Mar 6, 2013 3:22:59 AM

I'm generally OK with how GBD works, and can even accept that they get a slight bonus by being displayed earlier than, or overlaying, their competitors (main page price listing and map view, respectively), though I'd prefer they didn't. However, if they've been reported for posting incorrect prices -- cash vs credit, or regular vs midgrade, or flat out wrong values -- and they're being unresponsive, then perhaps that bonus should be deactivated until they fix the problem. Or if they're being extensively unresponsive, just shut off their price feeding and wait for them to ask why.
Profile Pic
Gas_Buddy
Champion Author Maryland

Posts:30,000
Points:3,677,510
Joined:Aug 2004
Message Posted: Mar 5, 2013 11:40:43 PM

Don:

Thank you for your post.
Profile Pic
CampKohler
Champion Author Sacramento

Posts:13,139
Points:2,086,650
Joined:May 2007
Message Posted: Mar 5, 2013 4:56:43 PM

Let's just pretend the GBD is like any other price reporter: if it's wrong, correct it and, if incorrect pricing continues, report it to GB. If enough reports (more than one?) are received, we must rely upon GB to take action.
Profile Pic
Don
Moderator
Message Posted: Mar 5, 2013 4:13:38 PM

Generally the GB_Direct program works well and does work as intended, what some people do not realize is that a lot of the errors posted through GB_Direct do come from user error, the same as other inaccurate prices. Most of the time these are not intentional, and should not be taken as such.

I've asked developers to review the price feed data source and see if they can get this corrected, thanks for bringing this to our attention HeavyDuty_cache, it's much appreciated.

---

GB_Direct is a program created in 2008 designed for station owners and operators to more easily submit prices to Gasbuddy. As the GasBuddy websites became more popular, stations are noticing that the GasBuddy sites were having an impact on their sales. Some stations and chains feed prices directly from corporate headquarters on GasBuddy sites.

Many stations still currently report prices to Gasbuddy manually. There is no cost or fee for stations to gain access the GasBuddy Direct program. It is simply a way for stores to get their prices on the site more easily on regular basis. The GasBuddy Direct program is not meant to compete with member price reports.

(The prices posted under GasBuddy Direct do not count for points and those stations etc are not eligible for the contests etc).

It is also an account used in partnership with a sister-company called "OpenStore", essentially a new media solution for convenience stores. In this respect, the GB_Direct account is used by participants to quickly report their fuel prices and display promotions on the website, if an OpenStore account, to attract more customers to their location.

Some of the perks of being registered with OpenStore include more "face time" in the price lists, and map pin markers that display logos.

---

If you notice prices being entered inaccurately by GB_Direct, please let us know the price(s) that were being posted, the station details (station name, address, area, state/province) and the approximate time posted, so we can bring it up for review.

-Don



[Edited by: Don at 3/5/2013 4:14:14 PM EST]
Profile Pic
Gas_Buddy
Champion Author Maryland

Posts:30,000
Points:3,677,510
Joined:Aug 2004
Message Posted: Mar 5, 2013 3:55:29 PM

jrsva:

"GB Direct is an ill-conceived program which presents an aura of impropriety for GasBuddy. The GBD program, by providing preferential treatment for some stations, destroys the apparent objectivity of GB as an unbiased and generally reliable source of information on gas prices."

I disagree that the program presents an aura of impropriety; that it hasn't worked out exactly as everyone hoped is an issue, but that doesn't mean that that gas stations are intentionally posting erroneous prices. I imagine that most gas stations post prices accurately because it's in their best interest to do so; that they don't update prices continually and their post doesn't immediately reflect price changes is a different issue.

Gas station posting does have one primary benefit; the gas stations aren't interested in points, or app awards, or having the most message posts, etc. They're interested in getting customers who will return to their station to buy what they sell. Deliberate false posting would only discourage repeated Gas Buddy member customers.

"Let them join as regular members and operate under the same rules as everyone else."

My problem with that is, if we're sitting here continually talking about false price posting for app awards, seeing that a gas station is posting prices lends, to me, a degree of accuracy.

Do some stations post the wrong prices? I guess so; after all, there are some complaints. But I don't have any idea of how many are still posting under the old "rules" (post the credit price), or how many may have automated their posting (as some members in Maryland have said they do, saying that "it saves times". One member, a while back, said he had automated his computer so that when a price post on his Favorite Stations List was posted, his computer would automatically re-post the price. (Well beyond my computer literacy.) But considering how many gas stations seem to be part of GB Direct, and how few complaints we've seen in the discussions, it doesn't seem that the problem is that serious an issue.

That doesn't mean that I don't believe GB Direct is a prefect program.

Maybe there needs to be an announcement box regarding the program and a discussion category about "Report false price postings here", and have a template "complaint box" that members can fill in, subject to regular review by moderators.

Profile Pic
scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

Posts:98,103
Points:3,896,240
Joined:Mar 2003
Message Posted: Mar 5, 2013 6:39:43 AM

Notify the moderators HDC. Let them know what is going on. We had the same problem in Pittsburgh and we kept deleting the bad prices and notifying the moderators and eventually the problem was fixed.
Profile Pic
jrsva
Champion Author Virginia

Posts:12,829
Points:2,258,125
Joined:Jan 2006
Message Posted: Mar 5, 2013 12:56:25 AM

GB Direct is an ill-conceived program which presents an aura of impropriety for GasBuddy. The GBD program, by providing preferential treatment for some stations, destroys the apparent objectivity of GB as an unbiased and generally reliable source of information on gas prices. The most meager intellect should be able to see that a price list (or map) where some entries are given special prominence is to be viewed with skepticism as to its reliability. My personal reaction is that I would not buy from a GBD station regardless of its price. I have been told that no money changes hands for the GBD program but that does not diminish the aura of impropriety. GB provides free advertising and prominent posting for companies wanting to post their own prices. It’s stupid; let them join as regular members and operate under the same rules as everyone else.

Profile Pic
HeavyDuty_cache
Champion Author Omaha

Posts:15,444
Points:3,085,930
Joined:Sep 2005
Message Posted: Mar 4, 2013 1:32:32 AM

The GB Direct account is posting incorrect prices in the Omaha area. It is posting the cheaper Mid-Grade price as Regular.

Sinclair
10505 Pacific St & 105th St Omaha - West GB_Direct

The price was deleted and updated and the incorrect price returned less than a couple of hours later.
Profile Pic
Gas_Buddy
Champion Author Maryland

Posts:30,000
Points:3,677,510
Joined:Aug 2004
Message Posted: Mar 3, 2013 8:04:54 PM

Gas Buddy Direct/GB Direct is simply a generic name, in the same manner that "Moderator" is generic.

And yes, they do know about the "pricing scheme". And because the posting is organizational (rather than individual member), yes they do know about "Mid-grade (E-10) prices being cheaper than the Regular (E-0) grade."

What has happened (although it's different than what you're discussing) is that a significant number of Gas Buddy Direct contributors started their posting when the credit price was the basic posted price, and some (based on posts in different threads) are still posting the credit price, rather than the cash price, as the primary price.

As for "Is this another way to make the price boards unreliable", I don't believe that there's any intent whatsoever, on the part of Gas Buddy management, to make the price boards "unreliable." Personally, I think the comment was uncalled for, regardless of what prices are being posted by "outsiders". But that's just my opinion.
Profile Pic
scoutmaster
Champion Author Pittsburgh

Posts:98,103
Points:3,896,240
Joined:Mar 2003
Message Posted: Mar 3, 2013 2:23:01 PM

GB Direct prices are usually posted from a corporate office and on auto-update. If they are posting bad prices, delete them and contact the moderators.
Profile Pic
buckeyecountry
Champion Author Ohio

Posts:11,288
Points:1,343,915
Joined:May 2011
Message Posted: Mar 3, 2013 11:39:01 AM

GBDirect postings around here are the same...unreliable
Post a reply Back to Topics